Buffalo Expected to Spend $7 Million on Roads this Summer

BUFFALO, NY - For a couple weeks, 2 On Your Side's been trying to get details from the City of Buffalo about what its schedule is this summer for fixing city roads.

Many of them are in poor condition and we want to know what's being done to fix them. Finally, some cost figures are starting to emerge.

For the past two weeks, 2 On Your Side has asked city officials including Mayor Brown and DPW Commissioner Steve Stepniak for information on what roads will be paved this summer. Information has slowly come out of the administration..

The summer season is the best time for municipalities to fix roads -- that's when the weather is most cooperative. We asked the city at a press conference Wednesday, what roads are being tackled this summer.

"I can work with our communications office on that we work on that and we are very fluid with our list with the council members so we can talk about that yes," said Stepniak.

But, that list still has not been sent to us.

On Thursday, we asked city spokesperson Mike DeGeorge what roads will be fixed this summer or are already under construction.

DeGeorge told Channel 2's Jeff Preval that one fear the city has in telling the public what roads are expected to be fixed is that some streets may not be fixed at all.

And that at times, there are weather delays and utility crews that interfere with road repair. DeGeorge also told me he would speak to Commissioner Stepniak to possibly get us a list of roads that are being worked on, but that hasn't happened.

This is contrary to what Erie County and other municipalities like Niagara Falls have done -- inform the public which roads will be repaired.

"I think it's important for the public to understand, which roads are being done especially the major projects," said Mark Poloncarz, the county executive. Therefore, residents can expect crews to be in their neighborhood.

We've learned from Common Council Members David Rivera and Rich Fontana that about $5 Million of city money is expected to be spent this summer on city roads.

"We're getting one ninth of the five million dollars this year," said Fontana.

The $5 Million is split up among the city's nine legislative districts. Plus, about $2 Million will be spent using money from the federal government. This means about $770,000 on average should go to each city district for road repair this summer.

We compared how much Buffalo is spending on roads to other cities like Niagara Falls. Buffalo in terms of population is roughly five times the size of Niagara Falls. How much is the Falls spending on their roads? A city official says about $5 Million dollars, slightly less than what Buffalo is spending.


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